In a world where SEO best practices mean better rankings, it’s hard to determine what exactly are the best practices for reaching the top of the organic rankings list for your industry keyword. Before you even think about DIY SEO for your website or recruiting outside help, here are five black hat SEO tactics that you’ll need to steer clear of to avoid being penalized.
- Link Farming. An age old tactic but one that doesn’t seem to die is websites who have hundreds or even thousands of spammy links pointing to their website. These links may appear to have an anchor text related to the content but in reality they point to a completely unrelated website. Instead, opt to link to websites that have a high domain authority and are relevant to your content.
- Scraping. Scraping content involves taking unique and original content from one site and pasting it onto other sites. This is usually done by a competitor in your industry in order to gain more users and a higher search engine ranking. In order to check to make sure that your content isn’t being stolen, copy some content from your site and run it through a program such as Copyscape.
- Heavy Server Load. Forceful crawling of a competitor’s site is absolutely frowned upon in the world of SEO. This is an instance when one website owner tries to crash another website’s server due to an influx in crawl traffic to the site. If the site isn’t crawled on a consistent basis, then it could be downranked. Always be sure to check if your website’s load time is fast, if not, contact your hosting company.
- Manipulating Content. On-page content is key for website success; it gives users the information they’re looking for and it gives website owners the chance to include specific keywords they’re trying to rank for. Unfortunately some people will hack a website and add hidden links to your site. Be sure to check your site’s code every now and again for links that may not appear to the naked eye.
- Site Gets Hacked. Having your website get hacked is no fun, but what’s worse is that even if getting hacked wasn’t necessarily your fault, you could still get penalized for it. Search engines don’t want to jeopardize the safety of their uses be sending them to insecure website. In order to prevent your website from getting hacked, there are a few ways to improve website security.
If your website has fallen victim to black hat SEO tactics due to a previous SEO company or because you believed what you were doing was the right way to go about improving your online visibility, contact our Boston-based SEO company today and we can help you get back on track.